This isn’t the free version of Amazon Prime Video that has been long-rumored, instead it’s a completely separate service allowing Amazon to generate more revenue from adverts while offering Fire TV users free entertainment.
It is expected that eventually subscription services such as Netflix and Amazon Video will expand to offer a free tier supported by ads. Late last year it was rumored Amazon was already talking to movie studios and media companies about a free version of Prime Video, but it turns out there may be a completely different service in the works.
As Engadget reports, it is now being suggested that Amazon is planning to launch a free and ad-supported video service aimed exclusively at Fire TV device owners. So when you purchase a Fire TV, Stick, or Cube, it will ship with access to a video service out the box and without a subscription. However, this wouldn’t be a free version of Prime Video. It’s a completely separate service.
It is thought the service will be called Free Dive and is in development at Amazon subsidiary IMDb rather than by a team at Amazon directly. The content on offer won’t be new shows, that’s reserved for Prime Video, but do expect a wealth of older content and of course lots of ads.
Nobody can really argue with free, and if Free Dive turns out to be real then it allows Amazon to better compete with streaming hardware from the likes of Roku. Remember, Roku already offers the completely free movie streaming Roku Channel, which recently became available on the Web.
Amazon will of course earn revenue from the ads, but can also keep some slots to itself in order to promote Amazon Prime subscriptions, and in particular Prime Video. Ads to potentially millions of viewers on Free Dive will also be very useful to promote sales and in particular Amazon Prime Day.